A while back I posted about our cat, Yuki, who is extremely anxious. It was an undertaking trying to help her out and make the space more comfortable for her. She was peeing in tubs, peeing on rugs, peeing on the floor near the front door, and basically going full tilt crazy, running all around the house, panting, and was always on edge. If you shifted even a bit on the couch she’d jump.
We fixed the peeing by the front door problem by moving her food dish by the door. Cats don’t like to pee near where they eat, so that stopped her bad habit, but she still sat by the door and howled. I mean seriously, the yowling noises I heard from her were freaky.
When we began the process of moving to a new house, we were only slightly concerned (read as: We were EXTREMELY concerned on how she’d handle the move)
The move happened a little over a month ago, and we are proud to say that all of her bad habits have vanished! She is still anxious and has some pretty intense separation anxiety. She runs at us when we come home, hopping around our legs and head butting us to the point where it can’t be good for her small little head. She’s also extremely imprinted on just the two of us. Other people can pet her, and she’s fine with people being in the house, but if someone stays overnight, she HATES THEM. She probably looks at it as someone invading her space for too long, or taking our attention off her…it’s hard to tell.
But, she hasn’t peed anywhere that isn’t her litter box, she no longer howls at the front door, and she doesn’t try to get outside when we leave in the morning. She still runs around crazy-like, but only to A) Get us out of bed on the weekends and B) If she wants to play. So, we’ve narrowed down the probable causes for her behavior in the previous house:
- A dog lived in the house with the previous tenants.
- Lots of strays outside (dogs and cats)
- Neighborhood cats literally pooping in the yard, and sleeping under the A/C unit outside
The new house is surrounded by new construction, not many people are living on the street yet and so, they aren’t any strays. At least, none near our streets. Since the house is new there were no previous tenants, so the house didn’t smell like any other animals. So our thoughts that Yuki needs to be in an one animal house have been further supported by evidence.
Now, obviously moving to a completely new house if your pet is super stressed and showing signs of high anxiety, is a bit extreme. We didn’t move for the cat, but it ended up being the perfect solution for her stress and anxiety. There are other things to try too, moving food bowls can stop peeing in cats, but won’t really solve the root problem. If you notice a cat that pees/poops near the house, you try things such as putting down cayenne pepper powder in your yard (dogs and cats don’t like it), you could set up a sprinkler that is motion activated (which works better in a back yard), you can also take your cat outside and hope that she/he marks the territory around the house. Regardless, if you think something is bothering your cat or dog, take them to the vet and describe the symptoms. There are a lot of things you can do to make your pet more comfortable, and remember, don’t just turn to taking it back to the shelter…or god forbid putting it down, just because your pet pees on something.
It’s been nearly five years now since my previous child hood cat, Marble, passed away. I still miss her dearly, she was a barn cat turned house cat. She’ll always hold a special place in my heart, and ever since I got her at age 4, I knew that I loved cats and wanted to do something to help them. So, I’m always offering cat advice to friends, donating to local shelters and cat-related charities, and reminding people to adopt don’t shop! As October approaches, make sure to keep black cats and dogs safe!